Caslon Egyptian

mncz's picture

Is this font commercially available? (For me to buy, that is).
It seems a nice match for Big Caslon I would like to use for a project.

reminiscor's picture

That lower case is dreadful; why can

hrant's picture

I think Caslon had no problem with dreadfulness...
That said, yes, revivalism is in general weak. Unless it's a commission. ;-)


jay's picture

>That lower case is dreadful

Uh, in what way?

reminiscor's picture

Does it look like something English made in 1815? No. Does it look like it goes with the capitals? No.

Nick Shinn's picture

Type founders were slow to put the sans form into metal -- it had been around for many decades in signage (painted and architectural) by the time of the Caslon foundry's type version.

Founders were also slow to add a lower case, it took decades to emerge, in fact.

So Schwartz is savvy to base his lower case on contemporary signage. Without seeing his sources, and without a knowledge of English signage of that era, it's difficult to criticize his interpretation. Do you have samples, Reminiscor?

There is another strategy for creating the lower case, which would be to derive it more closely from the serifed types of that era, which were mainly moderns. That would produce something which looked neater, and more like the English type of the era, with a less "unfolded' curve and smaller aperture.

But the idea that this would be more typographically authentic is false. The modern form of letter was just as developed in signage and lettering as it was in type. (This can be verified by examining gravestones.) The signwriters who developed the sans were skilled in rendering the refined modern form. The difficulty was purely one of design -- they were in terra incognita. It took a long time for a satisfactory "standard' of the lower case sans letterform to emerge, because the task is extremely difficult. (Caps much much easier.) For us today, with our tools, and knowledge and experience of the sans form, it's relatively easy to derive a grotesque sans from the early 18th century modern serifed style, and it would work well with such type. (BTW, Big Caslon is not such a type, dating from almost a century earlier.)

If the lower case of Caslon's Egyptian appears "flawed", that's not through any lack of skill on Schwarz's part (you won't find it in his other work, so why here?) but because it's a necessary condition of his quite correct methodolgy.

Miss Tiffany's picture

It seeems as if this font is still not available commerically. However, you could always email Harry at Font Bureau to see if it is something that will be available soon.

Bald Condensed's picture

Does it look like you're being slightly anal about this?

Your opinion , fair enough, but it sounds a teensy bit
pretentious telling Mr. Schwartz should be ashamed.
Let's just stick to the fact you don't like it. :-)

Miss Tiffany's picture

I second Nick's request for samples. Christian Schwartz's work thus far has only shown a continued growth as a type designer. I'd imagine that if the Caslon sans didn't have that naivete it wouldn't work as a revivalist sans from that era at all.

projectspace's picture

I found it here. Thanks Miss Tiffany!

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